Digital marketing is ever-evolving. More and more marketing channels enter the scene and drop off again, and it is important to stay on top of the latest developments. An effective digital marketing strategy takes into account the way people interact with online businesses, brands, and technology. The way this happens is different in every country, and Indonesia is no exception.

Smartphones are becoming more affordable for an increasing number of people in Indonesia. A lot of Indonesians have never owned a desktop computer or laptop, and their first exposure to the internet and digital marketing is through apps and mobile websites. As a result, there are many online businesses that reach their customers without even having a website.

Image source: We are social & Hootsuite, Image found via https://datareportal.com/reports/digital-2019-indonesia

As of 2019, according to research by We are social and Hootsuite, almost half of the Indonesian population does not have access to the internet yet. This means that in years to come, with internet penetration ever-growing, the online visibility and reach of your business will only increase with more potential customers gaining access to the internet.

So, how are Indonesian business owners reaching their audiences online currently? In this article, we explore the most popular digital marketing channels in Indonesia, how to optimise your presence on them, how to engage with your audience, and specific online growth opportunities.

Social Media

Image source: We are social & Hootsuite, Image found via https://datareportal.com/reports/digital-2019-indonesia

The infographic above describes the growth of social media usage in Indonesia. The total number of active social media users has reached 150 million in 2019. This is about 56% of the total population of Indonesia, of which the vast majority is using the various platforms primarily via mobile devices (130 million).

If you have a business in Indonesia, social media should be your number one priority to establish your online presence and to reach your audience and customers. 

Facebook

Image source: We are social & Hootsuite, Image found via https://datareportal.com/reports/digital-2019-indonesia

Facebook is the most active social media platform in the world. In 2019, Indonesia ranks in fourth place worldwide with 130 million active accounts.

With the development of social media, many Indonesian businesses have been expanding their online presence, using Facebook to promote themselves and their services and products. Promoting through Facebook does not require much time and expense if done correctly.

Here are some of the most effective features to utilize Facebook as a marketing medium:

  1. First of all, create a dedicated Facebook Fan Page for your brand so people can discover you
  2. Frequently post updates promoting your brand, using targeted hashtags to reach your preferred target audience and increase your organic reach
  3. Use Facebook’s Paid Advertising feature to display your products and services directly on the feed of your target audience.
  4. A/B test your ads to find out which ones are the most effective

While establishing a Facebook presence is important, for some business models, such as e-commerce stores, there is an even bigger social media channel to utilize: Instagram.

Instagram

Image source: We are social & Hootsuite, Image found via https://datareportal.com/reports/digital-2019-indonesia

Instagram is very popular in Indonesia. For your business to succeed online, having a presence on Instagram is critical. Many e-commerce stores are active solely via Instagram, even though the platform wasn’t meant to be an e-commerce platform in the first place.

Small businesses in Indonesia are uploading photos and videos of their products via Instagram posts and stories to eventually sell them via direct message exchanges or by including a link to their Tokopedia or Shopee account (two of Indonesia’s largest online e-commerce marketplace platforms).

Another great way to market your brand on Instagram in Indonesia is via influencer marketing, although this does require a larger budget to invest. It is becoming a very competitive space with many small businesses competing to be endorsed by relatively few large influencer accounts.

Instagram is not only being used by small businesses and individuals; even Indonesia’s largest brands and online stores are successfully using it to increase their sales. According to this case study by Instagram, Indonesian e-commerce giant Tokopedia has doubled their sales for certain products and has increased their product page views by 67% using Instagram.

Last but not least, it might be a very fruitful endeavor to invest in Instagram ads, which is another great way to increase your brand visibility on Instagram in Indonesia. Much like is the case with Facebook, this allows you to get your posts in front of a very targeted audience.

WhatsApp

If you are a small business owner in Indonesia, make sure to set up a WhatsApp Business account because this is the platform a large chunk of your customers will use to interact with you.

WhatsApp is the number one messaging app in Indonesia, and for a lot of businesses, this is the primary medium to communicate with customers. While it is technically a messenger app, it does have some social elements to it which are being used a lot in the country, primarily the WhatsApp Status feature (similar to the Instagram Story).

So WhatsApp is not only being used for direct business-to-customer communication but is also a great tool for customer retention in the form of WhatsApp Status updates.

LINE

Image Source: LINE

Another widely used messaging app in Indonesia is LINE – The Japanese instant messenger app which is very popular in Japan, Thailand and other countries in Asia.

LINE can be considered a blend between instant messaging and social media, and small and big businesses alike are promoting their products and services on it in Indonesia. Businesses can use their LINE business account to post and share their services and chat with customers.

Furthermore, LINE has a news feed section called LINE Today which you can use for promoting sponsored content directly to your contacts and target audience. This is another excellent way to get in front of your audience on a platform they are already using.

YouTube

Image Source: YouTube Shopee Indonesia

YouTube is one of the most visited websites in Indonesia, so it is not to be ignored. It is much more than just a search engine for videos; it contains a lot of social elements, has high engagement rates and is free to join.

Publishing high-quality video content is one more way to get your business in front of your target audience, indirectly growing your sales and revenue. Not only will you be discoverable on the largest video platform in Indonesia and the world, but you can also use the videos to embed into your website and other online marketing channels.

One might think that YouTube would be primarily useful for B2C marketing, but did you know that 59% of executives prefer watching video to reading text? This statistic proves that video content is also great for B2B marketing. Combine this with the huge popularity of YouTube in Indonesia in general, and it becomes a channel very much worth considering, no matter the size of your business.

Producing high-quality video content does not need to be expensive either, with many modern smartphone cameras being of a high enough quality standard.

Google Maps

Another marketing channel that is being used more and more in Indonesia is Google Maps. As we have talked about before on the Taksu Digital blog, Google Maps is increasingly being used as a discovery platform, meaning that your audience is entering search terms directly into Google Maps and is discovering businesses this way.

Google is increasingly serving its customers local search results, meaning that someone in Jakarta will see different search results compared to someone who is in Bali, for the same search query.

For example, let’s say you have a flat tire and you are looking for a motorbike repair shop. Whether you are in Jakarta, Surabaya or Bali, when you search for “motorbike repair shop” in Google or Google Maps, it will show you the nearest and best-rated motorbike repair shops relevant to your current location.

The good thing is, you have direct control over how you want to position your Indonesian business in Google Maps. All it takes to get started is to create a Google My Business account and get it verified by entering the post card Google will send you. If you need help setting this up, Taksu Digital does offer this service as part of our local optimisation services.

Growth opportunity: start a website

So far, we have covered marketing channels that do not require you to have a website.

What’s often missing from the online experience when interacting with businesses in Indonesia is a great website. As mentioned before, this is largely due to the massively popular social media channels and messaging apps, but also because of budget restraints or business owners simply not realizing the value of having a great website.

However, creating a website does not necessarily need to be expensive, and will eventually generate more customers and revenue for you compared to the amount of money you have invested in it.

Keep in mind: a website is the best medium to execute a targeted content strategy (via a blog or guides section for example) and will generate more brand awareness and customer trust over time, as well as brand visibility in the overall online landscape. Publishing great and valuable content on your own website will make people see you as an authority on your specific subject matter.

Perhaps more importantly: a website gives you access to two very important traffic (and thus revenue) streams via search engines which you don’t want to miss out on: organic traffic and paid traffic.

SEO in Indonesia

If and when you do have a website for your Indonesian business, it is important to make it as visible as possible in search engines like Google. The process to achieve this is called SEO, which stands for Search Engine Optimisation. Simply put: by having strong SEO on your website, you increase your chances of ranking high in organic search results.

More than 70% of users searching in Google clicks on the top 3 search results, which means you should aim to be in the top 3 for your most important keywords.

To use an example, a coffee shop in Jakarta should aim to rank high for keywords their target audience types into the search engines, such as:

  • Coffee shop Jakarta
  • Drink coffee in Jakarta
  • Good coffee in Jakarta
  • Best coffee in Jakarta

But it is also possible to refine it further. Let’s say your coffee shop is located in Kemang, Jakarta. Example keywords could then be:

  • Coffee shop Kemang
  • Drink coffee in Kemang
  • Good coffee in Kemang
  • Best coffee in Kemang

For a start, it would make sense to include these keywords in the title and content of your page, so the search engines will understand that these are important keywords associated with your business.

The audience you should be most interested in reaching via organic search is users searching via mobile devices. On a worldwide scale, more people are now using mobile devices to search versus desktop computers. In Indonesia, this is even more so, because a large population of the country uses the internet solely via their smartphones.

If we had to give one tip to improve the SEO for your website in Indonesia, it would therefore be to make sure your website is mobile-friendly. If it is not, Google will likely favor one of your competitors who does have a mobile-friendly website.

These examples are just the tip of the iceberg, as there are many more ranking factors to SEO optimise your website for. If you would like more information about SEO, or if you need help increasing the organic visibility of your website in Indonesia, please check out our SEO services page.

Paid Advertising

You have probably seen them when searching in Google: advertisements. Above many organic search results, Google displays up to 4 ads related to the keyword you are searching for. This is a relatively easy way for you to “bypass” the organic search results and make sure your business is more visible than your competitors.

However, the ads displayed aren’t randomly chosen; businesses pay money for their ads to be displayed at the top of the search results and clicked on. How much you need to pay for your ads is entirely dependent on how competitive the specific keyword is.

When searching for the keyword “hotel in Bali”, for example, the paid ads might look like this:

For your hotel to be visible in the paid ads, you would need to pay more than large websites like Booking.com and TripAdvisor are paying. This is unlikely to fit in the budget of a small and privately owned boutique guest house, for example. It is therefore recommended to use Google’s Adwords tool to do detailed keyword research and identify keywords that are less competitive and less expensive to bid on.

If you need help setting up and executing your paid ads strategy in Indonesia, check out our PPC services offering

Digital Marketing in Indonesia – Conclusion

There are many ways to increase and optimise the online presence for your business in Indonesia, and depending on your specific business model, certain channels might work better than others.

Having a presence on all of the marketing channels mentioned in this article is a great start. The next step is to optimise your presence on the most beneficial channels for your specific business. This way, you can get in front of your ideal target audience in the most efficient way possible.

If you need help with your digital marketing efforts in Indonesia, do not hesitate to contact us. Our team of digital marketing experts can identify the best online channels for your unique business and situation, and create a tailored digital marketing strategy to give your business the online visibility it deserves.

Share

Related Posts

Google penalty

Learn To Handle Google Penalties Like A Pro

If you own or manage a website that heavily depends on organic traffic from Google to keep it running, then waking up to a penalized website is definitely one of the worst things that can happen to your online business.   What is a Google Penalty or Manual Action? A Google Penalty is a punishment […]

Digital Marketing Behaviour in Asia: The Survey

At Taksu, we are passionate about the digital marketing world, that’s why we’re constantly developing new services and strategies that benefit not only our clients but the digital marketing community as well. As our company expands in the Asian market, we have decided to dig a little bit deeper and conduct our own research on […]

Live chat vs Chatbot – Which One To Use?

Customer service is not what it used to be. We, the customers, want fast assistance immediately. The time when we had to wait 5-7 business days to get an answer on a simple query is long gone. To be fair, most of us don’t even remember the last time we had to interact with an […]

Never miss a blog post

Sign up to our monthly newsletter

We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By agreeing you accept the use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.

Privacy Settings saved!
Privacy Settings

When you visit any web site, it may store or retrieve information on your browser, mostly in the form of cookies. Control your personal Cookie Services here.

These cookies are necessary for the website to function and cannot be switched off in our systems.

In order to use this website we use the following technically required cookies
  • wordpress_test_cookie
  • wordpress_logged_in_
  • wordpress_sec

In order to use this website we use the following technically required cookies
  • wordpress_test_cookie
  • wordpress_logged_in_
  • wordpress_sec

Decline all Services
Accept all Services